The Tale of the Golden Cockerel  

(1980, rev.-1988)

Text: Aleksandr Pushkin

Mezzo-soprano, Baritone; SATB

Instrumentation: fl(pic)/tpt/hp.pf/timp.per/bguit

Mukhtar Melikov, baritone

Natalia Golovnya, soprano

Igor Plitsyn, conductor

Azerbaijan State Choral Cappella

Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Ensemble

Azerbaijan State Philharmonic Hall, Baku

15 May 1989

Live recording

Sung in Russian

I. Somewhere in a secret kingdom

II. Came he with a tricky number

III. Quietly runs year after year

IV. Eight days passed without roar

V. Troops are marching day and night

VI. So at length Dadon decided

VII. Tale is lie but there’s a hint!

V. Troops are marching day and night

Troops are marching day and night; 

All the men are deadly tired. 

Neither battlefield, camp ground, 

Nor a hill or burial mound 

Had encountered Tsar Dadon.

"What's the miracle?" – looks he on.

Week had passed of trip almighty, 

Tsar brought troops to highland country. 

There, amidst sky-touching peaks 

Stands a silky tent on sticks. 

Valley lays in deep, fine silence 

No sound over mountains 

In the narrow canyon 

Murdered crowds sees Dadon. 

Near tent he sees two bodies 

His two sons without clothes, 

No armors, helmetless 

Swords run through each others' chests,

Cold and breathless.

Their horses 

Wander lose - free from remorses 

In the crushed and blood-stained grass.

By the narrow mountain pass

Tsar gave weep:

Woe is me!

They both are beaten

Both of proud falcons my - 

Nothing else I want but die!"

All the army mourned and grieved 

Heavy echo was received

From the mountains before.

Suddenly the silky door

Of the tent was quickly opened 

And Shemakha Queen was gotten -- 

Stunning beauty, like the dawn 

Quietly stepped to meet Dadon.

Like the owl in the morning 

Silenced Tsar not feeling warning 

He forgot death of his sons

At the sight of Queen at once.

She gave smile as rose in bloom 

To Dadon with little bow 

Took with tenderness his hand

And led him inside the tent. 

There she sat him at the table, 

Feasted him with viands of fable,

Bedded brocade bed for rest

Tsar got in the homey nest. 

After, for a week exactly,

Captured by her charm directly, 

Caught in network, caught in trap, 

Stayed Dadon within her lap.